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So, billion-dollar brand; Ben Francis, pizza delivery guy in the UK, builds it in like 2014 in a dorm room. I don’t know this for sure, but I suspect that some major sporting goods companies, in the board meetings, are talking about Gymshark and the challenge they’re bringing. The entirety of that business was built on simply finding amazing personal trainers who don’t work out in big gyms, but actually work out in their homes, and creating relationships with them. And then they become this leverage, this force multiplier for attention. They didn’t need any money for that, they just needed creativity for that.
Or another one is email marketing. For a lot of our merchants, a lot of merchants in general and some of the biggest brands, their email list is the most valuable thing that they use for marketing and they own it. You own your online store and you own your email list, you don’t rent that from somebody else.
And so again, there are other levers of that but you know, when one of those marketing channels closes another one will come up. And there’s always going to be an early-stage arbitrage opportunity before everyone sort of realizes, hey, this is a really good ROI. But those eventually will mature and some of them may close and there’ll be another one that comes up. That’s where resilience is almost more important than any one particular strategic direction.
Let me shift my attention to Amazon a little bit. One of the frames you have for Shopify is, you are not competing with Amazon. In fact, Shopify is partnered with Amazon in some ways. But you are creating a network of independent sellers who might then provide real competition to Amazon. I think that’s a really interesting frame. But you are partnered with Amazon. It’s almost two years on Shopify Fulfillment Network. How is that going?
It’s going great. And the reason that SFN is so important, to actually bring it right back to your introduction of this question was, it’s one of those additional pain points that the big companies, the big marketplaces, have had an unfair advantage on. That consumer expectation’s been completely reset, everybody wants affordable two-day shipping. And any individual merchant on Shopify that’s just getting started cannot properly do that.